Chevy Tahoe Do-it-Yourself ads: Did they Work?

In March we had great fun with the online Chevy Tahoe advertising campaign where one could go online and build your own commercial; TreeHuggers did so many wonderful parodies. Eight months later, Wired magazine analyses its effectiveness. "The contest ran for four weeks and drew more than 30,000 entries, the vast majority of which faithfully touted the vehicle's many selling points... But then there were the rogue entries, the ones that subverted the Tahoe message with references to global warming, social irresponsibility, war in Iraq, and the psychosexual connotations of extremely large cars. One contestant...a posted an offering called "Enjoy the Longer Summers!" which blamed the Tahoe for heat-trapping gasses and melting polar ice caps. An entry called "How Big Is Yours" declared, "Ours is really big! Watch us f**k America with it." The same contestant ...created an ad that asked the timeless question, "What Would Jesus Drive?" On its own Web site, the Tahoe now stood accused of everything but running down the Pillsbury Doughboy. ::Wired...BY ANY OBJECTIVE MEASURE, the Tahoe Apprentice campaign has to be judged a success. The microsite attracted 629,000 visitors by the time the contest winner, Michael Thrams from nearby Ann Arbor, was announced at the end of April. On average, those visitors spent more than nine minutes on the site, and nearly two-thirds of them went on to visit Chevy.com; for three weeks running, Chevyapprentice.com funneled more people to the Chevy site than either Google or Yahoo did.

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